Who is responsible for the New York Jets’ failure at quarterback?

The New York Jets maintain the longest postseason absence in the NFL. However, at the start of the season, no one realistically believed that the Gang Green would go from a 4-win team in 2021 to a playoff franchise in 22. The expectations were: any less than 7 wins this year would be a failure for general manager Joe Douglas and head coach Robert Saleh. Victories were not the domain of failure this year. The quarterback position in its entirety wins this award. Someone in the Jets organization is to blame.

Boston Globe via Getty Images

Boston Globe via Getty Images

It’s no secret that Zach Wilson wasn’t ready for the NFL in 2021 or 2022, but who convinced Joe Douglas and Robert Saleh that the rookie would be? Did the general manager and head coach feel that Wilson was a go-to? Was it Jets director of college scouting Jon Carr who convinced the Jets mastermind that the BYU quarterback was ready to handle the pressure of a New York team that didn’t make the playoffs? for a decade? What about the rumors that Wilson nearly lost his starting job at BYU or the Cougars playing a weak FBS Independent schedule? Didn’t those issues send red flags to the general manager and head coach heading into the draft?

OK, let’s just say Zach Wilson was talented but raw and needed to learn from the experience. Did the braintrust Gang Green believe grumpy old Joe Flacco would somehow guide Wilson to success? Seriously? When Douglas and Saleh saw how this combo worked in 2021, they kind of thought an encore in 22 would be a good idea? As GM, it was a major failure for Joe Douglas.

A 2018 fifth-round draft pick by the Dallas Cowboys, Mike White was a big story. White provided Jets fans with thrills and excitement. The Western Kentucky University QB could end up being a better story, if he can stay healthy. But is it realistic to think that all of a sudden, after 5 seasons going from NFL rosters to practice squads, Mike White will somehow lead the Jets to prosperity? It seems to be the same mindset that drafted a quarterback based on projected potential with very little experience against the toughest competition.

Joe Douglas set the Jets’ organization back by drafting Zach Wilson with the second selection of the 2021 NFL Draft. He further compromised the team by not surrounding Wilson with a quality replacement to compete against during the first rookie training camp. Douglas further damaged the team by not improving this backup situation in Year 2, apparently for fear of hurting Wilson’s confidence. This appears to be the same reason Mike White didn’t start the season, as a starting quarterback, after Zach Wilson got injured.

Joe Douglas has done a decent job improving the Jets since taking over as GM in 2019 (when his old friend and Jets fan nightmare Adam Gase was the chief caoch). However, Douglas not only mismanaged the quarterback position, he destroyed it. If the GM hadn’t been concerned about hurting a player’s feelings, the Jets would likely be in the playoffs. Joe Douglas failed to provide organizational stability at the most important offensive position on the field. Hard to keep your job with this line of decision making.

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